According to statistics, women are somewhat more likely to develop cancer than men– the percentage is 53% women vs. 47% men.
What is more, there are also specific types of cancer in women that for obvious reasons are impossible for men. This is cancer of the ovaries, cervix or uterine body, breast cancer.
In addition, women can suffer from oncological diseases such as cancerous lesions of the colon, skin gall bladder and liver ducts. Also they may have quite often cancer of the pancreas, blood and lymph system, kidneys, liver. But the lungs and stomach in women are affected less frequently than in men.
Women’s Cancer: the Most Common Disease
The most common types of cancer, from which women can suffer, are:
- Breast cancer,
- Uterine cancer (endometrial),
- Ovarian cancer,
- Cervical cancer,
- Cancer of the urinary organs.
Symptoms of Cancer
Although each of the cancers has its own specific characteristics, there are general signs and symptoms indicating the likelihood of certain types of cancer. Such symptoms should alert any woman, and serve as the reason for going to the doctor for the consultation and survey.
- The increase of the abdomen in absence of pregnancy. Such an indication may show that there is a possible growing tumor of the ovaries or of the uterus or the stretching of the intestinal loops, bloating and accumulation of edematous fluid in the abdomen produced by the growing tumor and affected tissues.
- Regular and prolonged disorders of excretory functions – persistent constipation or diarrhea, leakage of urine, blood, the difficulty when urinating that lasts more than two weeks in a row, progressive disorders of these functions. Such problems can be a symptom of colon cancer or the urinary system cancer.
- A steady increase in temperature to subfebrile figures in the absence of symptoms of an infection and any external causes. If you still have a temperature of more than 37.2 degrees more than ten days, which cannot be cured with antipyretic drugs and does not have real external causes, you should also be concerned.
- Secretion from the genital tract, especially during menopause, between periods, or during the break in taking oral contraceptives. It is especially important to pay attention to the bloody secretions, and the secretions of any color with an unpleasant odor. Also very scarce or overly abundant menstruation should also be a warning sign – these can be the signs of cancer of the uterus or the cervix.
- A sharp loss of body weight without being on a diet. If you lose weight quickly and sharply, without external reasons for weight loss, it can be a sign that cancer tumors have already appeared.
- Constant apathy and lethargy that arise during the progression of tumors and the destruction of the tissues and substances necessary for normal functioning of the body. Tumors produce special toxic substances that lead to fatigue, weakness, apathy, lethargy and malaise.
- Pain in the general area of the abdomen – the abdomen, the navel, around the belly, constant obsessive and irrational feeling of nausea, loss of appetite, which may be a symptom of ovarian cancer or a digestive system.
- Itching, change in the structure of the genital organs, discomfort during a sexual intercourse can be the signs of cancer lesions.
- Changes in a mammary gland without pain, the temperature rise in a separate area of the breast, nipple color change, dry flakes on the nipples, secretion from the nipple, the change of the shape of the nipple or areola, the deformation of the breasts, the pigmentation of the skin of the chest, the pits on the skin, “orange peel” on his chest.
Diagnosis of Cancer
If any of the above symptoms appear you should not hesitate to be examined by a doctor with all the necessary analyses and tests. First of all, do the routine blood and urine tests – general, biochemical, coagulation and hormonal examination are carried out. You also need to take a blood test to identify particularly common tumor markers.
It is often required to do genetic tests and have consultations to identify a high risk and likelihood of developing cancer. MRI is performed when a cancer is suspected with the determination of the location of the tumor and its possible spread to adjacent organs and tissues, the isotope scanning of the skeleton on the subject of metastasis to bones, organs endoscopy with the taking of tissues on cytology, biopsy tissue and, if possible, PET.